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2017 NBA Draft: Johnathan Williams to test the waters

Nothing really to see here folks.

Xavier v Gonzaga Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Gonzaga Bulldogs forward Johnathan Williams III is planning to test the NBA waters without signing an agent.

After the early departures of Nigel Williams-Goss and Zach Collins, this might have a few in the Gonzaga community on edge. But in reality, there isn’t much of a surprise here.

Says Williams in a press release: “After talking with the GU coaches and my family, I’m going to test the NBA Draft process. I will not be hiring an agent. It’s my dream to play in the NBA and not going with an agent allows me to see where I stand. I appreciate all of the support I continue to receive at Gonzaga University. I’m just following God’s plan and I’m thankful for the opportunity.”

The early entrant deadline isn’t until May 24, and by not signing an agent, Williams can participate in a lot of draft oriented things without sacrificing his collegiate eligibility.

For a player like Williams, whose skill set definitely fits in with today’s NBA style of play, this information is very important. Williams averaged 10.2 points and 6.4 rebounds per game this past season, and he demonstrated he has skills both in the post and outside of the paint.

Right off the bat, it won’t be enough to get drafted. However, any information he can get from professional scouts or GMs on what he needs to work on to improve his draft stock for next season is invaluable. So barring Williams showing up to a practice and completely outplaying every single human being on the floor, we should expect him back in a Gonzaga uniform next year.

Otherwise, without Williams, the Gonzaga Bulldogs will be in a real world of hurt. The Zags have already lost both Przemek Karnowski and Zach Collins. Losing Williams would leave the team’s front court as Jacob Larsen, Killian Tillie, and suddenly Ryan Edwards. That isn’t the front court of a top 25 team, and possibly not the front court of a NCAA Tournament caliber team.

Williams workouts will be something to keep an eye on. Considering he hasn’t appeared in any mock drafts all year, this seems more like an informational interview for Williams, and good for him for trying it out.